You will remember last week that I did an article about how Sports Direct do not pay any advertising for the hideous boards that adorn St James’ Park, and I reported how someone was interested in buying the space for local businesses and even the Sir Bobby Robson foundation. While I did not hold out much hope that the person in question would get very far with his endeavour, what I didn’t expect (but probably should have expected) is that the club have misled the fans once again.
This is the article posted on The Mag, outlining the issue,
“Last week I wrote an article about making an offer to sponsor some of the advertising boards around the ground and I nominated Sir Bobby Robson’s Charity to be advertised. May I start off by saying thank you to everyone who made an offer to help. The offers altogether were in the region of about £3,000 EVERY HOME GAME!!!!!
This followed Newcastle United directors stating in the minutes of a fans forum;
‘The club explained that the advertising boards in question were installed with Sports Direct branding as a showcase for unused space. Sports Direct don’t pay but it would be sold if other advertisers wanted the space.’
After my original email to the club and 5 unanswered voicemails left for people in the marketing department of the club, I heard nothing back. That is until now…
I was contacted by someone high up in the marketing department of the club (I have their name but won’t publish it here) and this is exactly what I was told;
“The club hold back ALL advertising boards, both L.E.D and normal boards, for official partners who pay a lot of money to keep them there”.
The person instantly dismissed me when I spoke of the Sir Bobby Foundation and said that is something they would not do. Not once was a price discussed in this very short phone call so they did not want to know if I was willing to pay £1 or £1million per board, that didn’t matter to them.
So basically the club has lied (shock horror) in either their recent meeting with NUST & Co at the Fans Forum, where they stated “Sports Direct advertises for free”, or alternatively to me on the phone when they said, “official partners pay a lot of money to keep them there”.
Please note he did say that official partners included Thomas Cook and Puma.”
There are lies entangled within this situation somewhere, either from the marketing department, or from the club representatives who were answering questions to the fan’s forum. Either way, the club has, once again, been proven to be misleading the fans once more.
If the official partners are paying money to “hold back ALL the boards” then why would they want Sports Direct being plastered on it? Surely if our official sponsors are paying for the boards, they would want their own logo adorning the board?
To tell you the truth, I’m not surprised. This club is rotten to the core and they are showing themselves up time and time again.
What do you think? Who is lying to whom? Did the club reps lie when they said they would sell to advertisers? Or did the marketing rep lie when they said official sponsors pay for the boards? I’d love to hear your views.